Randall Reeves

Is a Non-Stop Figure 8 Possible?

21 Nov

When imagining early on the two poleward legs required to complete a Figure 8–the long Southern Ocean loop and the Northwest Passage–it was the latter that gave me fits. The maze of remote waterways, some without soundings, all with the likelihood of pack ice, was enough to freeze my courage.

So, when it arose, I took an opportunity to explore the high north as crew before making my own solo attempt. In 2014, I joined Les an Ali Parsons on their 43-foot steel cutter, Arctic Tern, for what turned out to be a 65-day passage from Nuuk, Greenland to ...

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There’s No Such Thing as a One-Year Cruise

13 Nov
My first solo ocean crossing in Murre.

This week I am reminded of the observation, “The more things change, the more they stay the same,” this courtesy of my wife.  

“I have a challenge for you,” said Joanna over Sunday morning coffee. “Do you remember when I wrote the following remark to friends?”

And he’s off… Randall sailed under the Golden Gate Bridge this morning at 8:56am. Now I start the countdown to his return 365-ish days from now.

That I could recall, I had provided but one occasion for such a note, that being the first Figure 8 Voyage ...

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Course and Speed: Uncertain

6 Nov

November 5, 2019

Days since return: 15

Noon Position: 37 46N 122 08W

Miles Since Last Noon: 5 (a walk in the Oakland Hills)

Course and Speed: uncertain

I thought I had re-entry figured out.

After a longish cruise for home, I anchor awhile in Drakes Bay before proceeding on to civilization. From here the city is close but still at arm’s length. On a clear day, I can see Twin Peaks and the Richmond District; at night the glow of San Francisco fills the southern sky, obliterating even the constellations. 

But my near view remains dominated by the more ...

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A Thank You to Figure 8 Virtual Voyagers!

31 Oct

It began as a simple enough idea–to solo circumnavigate the Americas and Antarctica in one season. A boat, a sailor, a big sea, some ice and a double loop of the globe in roughly the shape of an eight.

But as time went on and as the idea developed, it came required the help of more and more people until, in the end, this ostensibly singular endeavor took an entire village to pull it off.

Though I am eager to express my gratitude to everyone involved, it is with some trepidation that I sat down today to publish a list. ...

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Home is the Sailor, Home from the Sea

23 Oct

Drakes Bay

October 19, 2019

5am. The alarm sounds to wake me though I’ve been up since three o’clock. 

For some time I lay in the dark listening to the wind whine in the rigging. Mo tugs at her chain. I wait for sleep to descend again, but it has slipped away in the night to play with the coyotes calling from the headland.

Today we return home. My heart pounds. The bunk rejects me.

I make coffee but can’t sit to drink it. By flashlight I continue the endless job of tidying the deck in preparation for our Golden ...

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October 19th Livestream and special announcements from LandOps…

18 Oct

Hi, awesome virtual voyagers!

Quick update from the Landops team aka Joanna aka “The Wife”

  1. If you want to watch Moli and Randall come under the Golden Gate Bridge on Saturday and can’t make it no worries. We’re now going to be Live Streaming the event on Facebook. If you want to watch just go to The Figure 8 Voyage Page here at approximately 12:30 pm PST . We’ll be streaming the “landing” at the Sausalito Yacht Club somewhere between 1:15 pm – 1:30 pm PST. Yes, we will be recording and sharing this footage. https://www.facebook.com/figure8voyage/
  2. If you want to
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A Return to Drakes Bay

14 Oct

October 10, 2019

Drakes Bay
Anchor down 1300 local, 2200 gmt

Days at Sea: 306
Days Since Departure: 375
Total Miles: 38,978

Slowly the gale releases its grip. Overnight and as I sleep the wind comes down; the sea relaxes. By dawn Mo makes 5 knots under jib alone on a gentle undulation I can barely perceive from my bunk.

I raise the main at sunup, but the wind continues to fall away until by mid morning the sails hang limply; the sea is glass. We are under power the last miles for Drakes Bay.

“I’m sorry, Monte,” I say. ...

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Surefoot’s Gale

12 Oct

October 9, 2019

Days at Sea: 305
Days Since Departure: 373

Noon Position: 38 59N  125 37W
Course(t)/Speed(kts): SExE 7 – 8
Wind(t/tws): N 35
Sea(t/ft): N 10 – 14
Sky/10ths Cover: Clear 0
Bar(mb): 1019+, falling slowly
On-deck Temp(f): 64
Cabin Temp(f): 66
Water Temp(f): 60
Relative Humidity(%): 68
Magnetic Variation: 14.0

Sail: Working headsail 2/3rds or more rolle up.

Noon-to-Noon Miles Made Good (nm): 157
Miles since departure: 38,840

All night I let Mo run SSE so as to stay on the outer edge of the low. Winds here will remain under 30 knots and allow me a ...

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Lazy Days and Gulf of Alaska VIDEO

9 Oct

October 7, 2019

Days at Sea: 303
Days Since Departure: 311

Noon Position: 43 17N  127 55W
Course(t)/Speed(kts): SExS 6
Wind(t/tws): W 15
Sea(t/ft): NW 3
Sky/10ths Cover: Clear 0
Bar(mb): 1022, steady
On-deck Temp(f): 70
Cabin Temp(f): 72
Water Temp(f): 63
Relative Humidity(%): 71
Magnetic Variation: 15.2

Sail: Main to port; working jib poled to starboard, broad reach.

Noon-to-Noon Miles Made Good (nm): 103
Miles since departure: 38,561

Finally we are running right down hill. The days are warm; the breeze, gentle. The jet contrails, of which there were five at dawn, all stream by us on a parallel ...

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